The Best Inventions of 2020
Jessica Pettway for TIME; Prop styling by Stephanie L. Yeh
November 19, 2020 8:56 AM EST

Wireless earbuds are increasingly capable of blocking the noise of the outside world while you listen to some tunes. But when you can’t hear the person right in front of you, it’d be nice if they offered a little help. The IQbuds2 MAX ($319) are on the case. They deliver on the audio front but also are the only wireless buds that feature both active noise cancellation and audio-processing technology capable of isolating human conversations, tuning out everything except the people or sounds you want to hear. Not only do they make it easier to hear your friends on the subway or at a noisy café, they can also help stem the debilitating effects of hearing loss—a condition that affects more than 466 million people worldwide. —Patrick Lucas Austin

Buy now: Nuheara IQbuds2 MAX

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